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                                          Book of the Week

Unmaking War, Remaking Men
by Kathleen Barry

Today's headlines are shocking:From The Guardian

Nuclear war has become thinkable again - we need a reminder of what it means
by Paul Mason

As the author of the Guardian piece Paul Mason writes: As Trump faces down North Korea, it’s alarming to think that most of the world’s nuclear warheads are now in the hands of men who are prepared to use them.

In Unmaking War, Remaking Men, Kathleen Barry asks: "What would it take to unmake war?" What Barry is wanting and what we all desire is an end to war. Mason writes: Trump is ramping up the military rhetoric for a horribly simple reason: two weeks ago, the isolationist wing of his team got outflanked by generals; they tried some war to see how it went down and it went down well.

Kathleen Barry discusses how in 2001, a fateful year for the world, George W. Bush became President of the US; Ariel Sharon became Prime Minister of Israel; and Osama bin Laden became the de facto world terrorist leader. She analyses their leadership and failure of empathy. Unmaking War, Remaking Men reveals a common psychopathology of those driven to ongoing war, first making enemies, then labeling them as terrorists or infidels.

It is now 2017. Last week Donald Trump deployed his superweapon Moab, the “mother of all bombs” in Afghanistan and this week the world is on edge yet again. Chillingly Mason informs us that for Kim Jong-un, it’s thinkable; for Vladimir Putin, it’s so thinkable that every major Russian wargame ends with a “nuclear de-escalation” phase: that is, drop one and offer peace. On 22 December last year, Trump and Putin announced, almost simultaneously, that they were going to expand their nuclear arsenals and update the technology.

In Unmaking War, Remaking Men, Barry turns to the urgent problem of how might men remake themselves by unmaking masculinity. She offers models for a new masculinity drawing on the experiences of men who have resisted war and have in turn transformed their lives into a new kind of humanity; into a place where the value of being human counts.

Medea Benjamin of Codepink suggests that we need to understand the makings of war. She writes: Kathleen Barry's Unmaking War, Remaking Men is a remarkable blend of history, current war-making and soul-searching that unravels the very structures of war. Read it, get energized and join us in Barry’s ultimate challenge: replacing the paradigm of war with a paradigm of shared human consciousness based on empathy.



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